Android 9.0 'Pie' ships on Google Pixel with slow release throughout fall

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Google has formally released Android 9, the latest iteration of the mobile operating system, with the company's Pixel line among the first smartphones to be able to install the new software, with Google also revealing the Android version's name: Pie.




Android 9 will start to roll out to Google's Pixel smartphones starting today, as part of the first wave of devices that will be able to run the operating system. Smartphones that were included in the Android 9 beta program, including devices from Sony Mobile, Xiaomi, HMD Global, Oppo, Vivo, OnePLus, and Essential, are said to receive their own updates by the end of this fall.

A number of qualifying Android One devices will also receive an update, within the same timeframe as the beta smartphones. Google also states on the Android blog it is working with other hardware partners to either upgrade devices or launch new products running Android 9 this year.

Introduced in May during Google I/O, Android Pie adopts more machine learning technology than seen in previous versions, with an Adaptive Battery that helps change the priority of services based on usage to minimize power draw, and Adaptive Brightness to match the user's preferred settings over time.




The operating system's App Actions are a more obvious use of machine learning to users, with it attempting to predict what the user wants to do. For example, App Actions could bring up frequent contacts and most-used apps if it believes the user to be working, bring up navigational tools while in transit, or summon playlist links and music apps if headphones are connected.

The machine learning elements were advised during Google I/O to be performed on the user's device rather than being processed on Google's servers, in a bid to keep user data private.

Google has also moved to including gesture-based multitasking, as part of changes to how users navigate their devices. Users can switch between apps using gestures instead of buttons, while other elements have been simplified or made more intuitive.

For searches, Slices will bring up parts of apps within results. For example, a search for Lyft could bring up how far the nearest driver is from the user, as well as the prices and distances for commonly-visited locations.

In a similar move to Apple's digital health initiatives in iOS 12, Android Pie also includes "Digital Wellbeing" features, which advises how long apps have been used for each day, to nudge users to use their devices in a more constructive way. Daily time limits can also be set for app usage, with app icons greying out once a limit has been reached as a reminder to users to reduce their usage.




The Digital Wellbeing features will not be immediately available, launching fully in the fall, but Google is allowing Pixel owners to try them out in beta.

Google also claims Android 9 is more secure than previous versions, with an improved security model for biometrics and a hardened platform. Security improvements including TLS by Default and DNS over TLS are also added, to help improve privacy.

Despite today's launch, it is likely that most users will have a far longer wait than the fall before they see Android 9 on their devices, as vendors have to produce their own versions customized for their products. This has led to high fragmentation across the ecosystem and glacial adoption rates.

In April, it was revealed Android 8.0 and 8.1 Oreo, the previous major Android release, had only been installed on 4.6 percent of compatible devices since its release to the public in August 2017. At the time, over three quarters of Android devices used either version 7.x Nougat, 6.0 Marshmallow, or 5.x Lollipop.
redsnowdrop
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    nunzynunzy Posts: 521member
    Android is a stolen operating system. Google tried to kill the iPhone.

    Never forget.
    derekmorrolsracerhomie3
  • Reply 2 of 22

    Despite today's launch, it is likely that most users will have a far longer wait than the fall before they see Android 9 on their devices, as vendors have to produce their own versions customized for their products. This has led to high fragmentation across the ecosystem and glacial adoption rates.

    In April, it was revealed Android 8.0 and 8.1 Oreo, the previous major Android release, had only been installed on 4.6 percent of compatible devices since its release to the public in August 2017. At the time, over three quarters of Android devices used either version 7.x Nougat, 6.0 Marshmallow, or 5.x Lollipop.
    The three little kittens, they lost their mittens,
    And they began to cry,
    "Oh, mother dear, we sadly fear,
    That we have lost our mittens."
    "What!   Lost your mittens, you naughty kittens!
    Then you shall have no pie."
    "Meow, meow, meow."
    "Then you shall have no pie."
    lkrupppscooter63brakkenjcs2305leeeh2
  • Reply 3 of 22
    I have a couple Android tablet style devices, and they never get major updates because the HW creators don't care.  This is one of the biggest downsides of Android!  :(
    redsnowdropwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 22
    I have a couple Android tablet style devices, and they never get major updates because the HW creators don't care.  This is one of the biggest downsides of Android!  :(

    Don’t worry. Project Treble will cure fragmentation.
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Oh wait......
    racerhomie3watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 22
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,893member
    I have a couple Android tablet style devices, and they never get major updates because the HW creators don't care.  This is one of the biggest downsides of Android!  :(

    Don’t worry. Project Treble will cure fragmentation.
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Oh wait......
    Only if that tablet is already running Oreo (Android tablets??), and still needs the OEM to do their part. Some still won't even tho Google took care of the hard part for them, the hardware integration.
    https://www.howtogeek.com/344590/what-is-project-treble-on-android-and-will-my-phone-get-it/

    Treble can sure help speed things up but still needs cooperation from the OEM. 

    Edit: I'm running Android Pie. 
    edited August 6 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 6 of 22
    entropysentropys Posts: 1,158member
    I suspect android purchasers don't care as they just by a new phone to get the latest.  The lower price allows them to do so.  
    That said, it is appalling that a new phone can be purchased with a several generations old version of android on board with no upgrade path.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 22
    dewmedewme Posts: 1,489member
    Cow Pie.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 22
  • Reply 9 of 22
    Seriously, though.

    Pie? How generic can you be? Pecan Pie would have been better. So would Peppermint.
    mwhitedewmepscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 22
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,893member
    entropys said:
    I suspect android purchasers don't care as they just by a new phone to get the latest.  The lower price allows them to do so.  
    That said, it is appalling that a new phone can be purchased with a several generations old version of android on board with no upgrade path.
    You might be right. Maybe most buyers don't really care whether they get an entire OS update or not as long as they get most of the new features, and they do. Maybe that's what they really care about.

    At least Google was smart to separate mostf features into Apps that were downloadable from Google Play. OEM can't be depended on.
    edited August 6
  • Reply 11 of 22
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 29,506member
    They missed the obvious name choice:  "Poo"
    lamboaudi4ericthehalfbeeracerhomie3watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 22
    Pie? How generic can you be? Pecan Pie would have been better. So would Peppermint.
    Seriously Fragmented Pie.

    (Okay, needs work...)
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 22
    brakkenbrakken Posts: 667member
    In other news, Alphagoo has devised a way out of its theft-related Android predicament by trplacing Oracle’s stolen code with ‘machine learning’. By using this generic approach, AG not only doen’t need to pay for code, but it kills two birds, also replacing the lame, idiotic and amazingly expensive Chrome BS. Despite mimicing Apple’s ‘all processed on device therefore safe’ line, eight militant Android fans have taken to blogs begging Google to “Stay true!” More details at 11!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 22
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 3,926member
    They missed the obvious name choice:  "Poo"
    Mmm. Perhaps a chance for some really original branding. 



      Android Minnie from Google – with that special ingredient, baked in.
    mjtomlinwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 22
    asciiascii Posts: 5,776member
    They do need to fix their deployment model! Android is a nice OS but so is iOS, Apple has nothing to fear from Google at the moment. A future danger might be that Google develops some compelling AI-based feature that Apple can't match.
  • Reply 16 of 22
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 1,756member
    If Samsung actually had any "balls" they would go their own way with their own OS and finally move away from Android. It must irk the rest of the world that they've become so dependent on a U.S. software company (again). Even though it's an "open" system, unlike Windows, they all still depend on Google for the heavy lifting.

    The state of the mobile market is exactly like the desktop computer market of years ago. Many OEMs started with their own OS and software, but eventually all moved to a single platform, with only one original left standing. And again, it's Apple.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 22
    crossladcrosslad Posts: 453member
    With the obvious influence of iOS, the should have called it Apple Pie. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 22
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 2,995member
    crosslad said:
    With the obvious influence of iOS, the should have called it Apple Pie. 
    What should Apple call iOS now since many of the gestures introduced with the X existed elsewhere. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad Apple is using them as they work really well. I like when good ideas spread. I like the things iOS nicked from WebOS.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 19 of 22
    crosslad said:
    With the obvious influence of iOS, the should have called it Apple Pie. 
    What should Apple call iOS now since many of the gestures introduced with the X existed elsewhere. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad Apple is using them as they work really well. I like when good ideas spread. I like the things iOS nicked from WebOS.

    I like the idea WebOS was headed by a former Apple employee (Jon Rubinstein) and borrowed from the iPod. Especially since Jon Rubinstein was a senior Vice President of iPod division.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 22
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,893member
    crosslad said:
    With the obvious influence of iOS, the should have called it Apple Pie. 
    What should Apple call iOS now since many of the gestures introduced with the X existed elsewhere. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad Apple is using them as they work really well. I like when good ideas spread. I like the things iOS nicked from WebOS.

    I like the idea WebOS was headed by a former Apple employee (Jon Rubinstein) and borrowed from the iPod. Especially since Jon Rubinstein was a senior Vice President of iPod division.
    Yup, people come up with the ideas and inventions. Depending on who they are currently employed by and whether that person's superiors wants to accept their ideas affects who gets public credit for it. 
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